LAHORE: Pakistan’s property portal Zameen.com has closed a venture round with Singapore-based Catcha Group and Frontier Digital Ventures. Following this deal, both Catcha Group and Frontier Digital Ventures have acquired a substantial interest in Zameen.com.
Though the majority of shares will remain with the current management of the property portal, which was launched by two Pakistani entrepreneur brothers back in 2006, the acquired enterprise is expected to formally launch in September this year.
Zameen.com Chief Executive Officer and co founder Zeeshan Ali Khan, while giving a presentation on the success of the model, said the deal was extremely significant as it was the first major investment by a foreign conglomerate in Pakistan through a local organisation.
In 2012, Gilles Blanchard, co founder of SeLoger.com – the largest property portal of France – came on board as an angel investor and took up the role of chairman at Zameen.com. Since then, the portal has grown exponentially and has further consolidated its position as the leading property portal in the country.
New board of directors member Shaun Di Gregoria said Zameen.com epitomises the kind of business that Frontier Digital Ventures is seeking to invest in. “We see a potential of growth with Frontier and have the expertise of utilising the opportunities emerging markets present,” said Gregoria.
Catcha Group is a vastly experienced entrepreneurial corporation that invests heavily in new media ideas. The largest online investor in the ASEAN region, the group controls an extensive portfolio of listed and unlisted assets in excess of $1 billion. It owns and operates a host of business concerns such as iproperty group, iCarAsia, iBuy, and Catcha media, all of which are public listed companies for which the group has held IPOs.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 28th, 2014.